Sporting Kansas City at FC Dallas
2020 MLS Regular Season | Match 17 of 23
Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020 | 7:30 p.m. CT
Toyota Stadium | Frisco, Texas
English TV | FOX Sports Kansas City
English TV | FOX Sports Midwest
Streaming | FOX Sports GO or ESPN Plus
English Radio | Sports Radio 810 WHB
Spanish Radio | La Grande 1340 AM
Winners of three straight matches and a point out of first place in the Western Conference, Sporting Kansas City (9-5-2, 29 points) will ride a wave of momentum in Wednesday's showdown with fellow MLS originals FC Dallas (5-4-6, 21 points) at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas.
The midweek matchup will kick off at 7:30 p.m. CT, featuring three hours of live coverage on FOX Sports Kansas City, FOX Sports Midwest and FOX Sports GO beginning at 7 p.m. CT. Sports Radio 810 WHB and La Grande 1340 AM will also carry the game locally, while fans outside of the FOX Sports Midwest footprint can stream the action on ESPN Plus. Additional in-game updates will be available via the Sporting KC app.
Sunday's 2-1 defeat of Nashville SC at Children's Mercy Park gave Sporting three regular season wins in a nine-day period for the seventh time in club history and only the second time since 2005. The hot stretch began with an Alan Pulido-inspired 2-1 road win over the Houston Dynamo on Oct. 3 and continued with a 1-0 home defeat of Chicago Fire FC on Oct. 7 in which penalty-saving goalkeeper Tim Melia and goal-scoring center back Winston Reid were the difference makers.
The acclaimed hero on Sunday was Erik Hurtado, who bagged one of Sporting's all-time greatest goals with a sumptuous volley in the 79th minute on an assist from Amadou Dia. The wonderstrike completed a spirited fightback that saw Sporting fall behind to Walker Zimmerman's first-half header before Johnny Russell assisted Gerso Fernandes' 53rd-minute equalizer. Wednesday will now give Sporting a shot at their first four-game regular season winning streak since August 2018.
Thanks to their recent spurt, Sporting sits one point behind Western Conference co-leaders Seattle and Portland and eight points ahead of sixth-place FC Dallas. Both teams are well-positioned to reach the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs, as the top eight finishers in the West will punch a postseason ticket. Aside from finishing above the playoff line, a thoroughly compelling race is developing at the top. The team that sits atop the table at the conclusion of the regular season will have homefield advantage in the playoffs through the conference final.
Sporting and Dallas have met twice previously this season at Children's Mercy Park. The visitors emerged with four points in those two encounters, including a 1-1 stalemate on Sept. 2 and a simmering 3-2 result on Sept. 19 that produced a total of eight yellow cards and a red card to Dallas midfielder Bryan Acosta. First-year striker Franco Jara has made a decisive mark in the series, scoring for Dallas in the 1-1 draw and notching a brace in his team's victory last month. Sporting are 0-3-1 versus Dallas in the last four meetings dating back to 2019.
Dallas will enter the contest on a full week of rest after their weekend fixture versus Minnesota United FC was postponed due to COVID-19 concerns. Veteran center back Matt Hedges has played in all but one of Dallas' 15 games this season, but he sustained a muscle injury in a 2-0 loss at Houston on Oct. 7 and will be sidelined on Wednesday. Second-year head coach Luchi Gonzalez has a strong cast of defenders to call upon, however, as Dallas' 17 goals allowed are tied for the fewest in the Western Conference. Hedges' most likely replacement is Bressan, a 27-year-old Brazilian with four starts under his belt this season.
Sporting will also be forced to cope with the absence of a key defender, as right back Graham Zusi will miss his second straight game with a foot injury. Twenty-year-old Sporting KC Academy product Jaylin Lindsey filled in for Zusi on Sunday and has started six of seven MLS appearances this year, racking up a career-high 609 minutes.
Manager Peter Vermes' men face a quick turnaround following Wednesday's affair, as they will travel to face Chicago on Saturday afternoon at Soldier Field. This week will cap a busy period of the schedule that requires Sporting to play five times in 15 days.